Time Warner Cable and CBS extend contract by a day as dispute heats up

By Daniel S Levine,

The retransmission dispute between Time Warner Cable and CBS continues to heat up, as the two sides are still not seeing eye-to-eye. However, they gave themselves an extra day to continue negotiations before CBS disappears for Time Warner Cable subscribers in major markets like New York and Los Angeles.

The fight went public last week, with CBS and TWC both beginning campaigns to get subscribers on their sides. While CBS admits that it is looking for higher rates, TWC says that they are much too high and inexcusable.

According to CNET, CBS chief Les Moonves issued an internal email, writing that TWC should have no problem paying up and that CBS has some of the most popular TV shows on air right now, so it deserves to charge more. He said that there is a “very real threat” that CBS could disappear from TWC by Thursday if no deal is reached.

“If on Thursday our content has been pulled off their service, you'll know that we are in the midst of a crucial struggle we intend to bring to a satisfactory conclusion,” Moonves wrote.

TWC and CBS’ current contract actually expired on June 30, but they gave themselves until July 24 at first to reach an agreement. Negotiations are still going nowhere and the two sides agreed to extend the deadline to Thursday, July 25 at 9 a.m. ET, reports Bloomberg.

Maureen Huff, a Time Warner Cable spokeswoman, told Bloomberg that the extension was put in place since the July sweeps season ends Thursday.

This is the latest carriage dispute between a cable provider and station owners. If TWC loses CBS, it could also lose Showtime - the home of Dexter and Ray Donovan - since the premium network is owned by CBS. LA, NYC, Dallas, Detroit, Denver, Chicago, Boston and Pittsburgh are the markets that could be affected if no agreement is reached.

image: CBS

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